But schools and hospitals are not potatoes. Health care is distributed according to need, not customer demand. Parents can choose a school but cannot ask for the curriculum to be changed or for a shoddy year's education to be replaced.
So priorities in public services are still set mainly by those who run them, and calling parents, passengers or patients 'customers' does not change that. Local political control had its imperfections, as did the corporate representation of the 1970s. But either is preferable to the national governing party having the power to choose all the people who make decisions. That way lies the one- party state, in which membership of the Conservative Party - or at least acceptance of its principles - becomes as essential to advancement as membership of the Communist Party in the old Soviet Union.Reuse content